I planted sunflower seeds this spring in the flower bed along my front porch. I envisioned their towering stalks against the background of the white lattice and porch railing, brightening the surroundings with their cheery, yellow and brown faces. Then, having a couple extra seeds left, I dropped several in the corner bed with the water fountain beside a utility pole at the street intersection. The next few days when I spied little birds pecking around in the beds, I suspected they were digging for my seeds, but hoped they wouldn’t be able to find them. Later, however, my suspicions were confirmed when not even one sunflower sprouted in the front flower beds, and it was obvious that the birds had had a feast, devouring all the seeds I had planted. The only seed that popped its head up, was the one I had planted beside the utility pole at the corner of our busy intersection. Of all the places I planted seeds, this was the spot I least expected or wanted a sunflower to grow.
I watched daily as the small sprout poked its way up from the ground, steadily growing, developing, thickening, pushing higher and higher. I was happy that at least one of my seeds had survived.
The sunflower stalk towered, topping 7 feet, standing tall, robust, and healthy. In fact, it sprouted so quickly that it reminded me of Jack’s Beanstalk that appeared in one night and stretched to the sky. However, despite its Jack in the Beanstalk look, it had absolutely no flowers on it. What is a sunflower stalk with no sunflowers? I walked by it daily, wondering what could have possibly happened to it since other neighborhood plants already boasted a plethora of the bright yellow flowers.
Then, one day last week, it finally happened. One blossom peeked its head out and opened up. It was a large, gloriously perfect sunflower with the striking contrast of the brown-seeded center and brilliant yellow petals. At long last, what I had hoped for and watched for and waited for, suddenly appeared!
We admired and adored it and took numerous pictures of it. It opened up directly facing our house. Then two days later, a second bud opened up and then another and another. Right now more than 10 perfectly-shaped, bold, yellow sunflowers have unfurled their delightful petals to reveal their dazzling beauty to everyone passing by or stopped temporarily at the intersection’s traffic light.
The Sunflower’s Story and Message: At some point in your life, you may find yourself living or working or ministering in a place that is different from what you planned and envisioned for your life. Wherever you are, persevere; continue to do your best to grow and learn and pursue what God has for you, and at the perfect time, you will “bloom”. You will see the fulfillment of what you have been longing for and hoping for and believing for. Like wildflowers, you must allow yourself to grow in all the places people thought you never would. -EV
Every flower blooms in its own time. -Ken Petty
Let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up. Galatians 6:9 (NLT)